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UK News

Justin Welby backs book teaching children the real value of money

by Donna Birrell

The Archbishop of Canterbury has given his backing to a new interactive story book aimed at teaching young children about the real value of money.

Milo's Money is a free set of classroom resources which has already been piloted in 90 schools throughout the UK. 

It's been produced by the Church Urban Fund and the Just Finance Foundation which hope to help children learn vital skills in handling and saving money.

Laura Halloran from the Just Finance Foundation tells Premier it's aimed at children between the ages of five and seven and is centred around the story of a dinosaur:

"The theme of the book is Milo, a little dinosaur, who is given some money by his uncle for doing a chore. He learns about what coins are, how he can spend them, and about all the different ways that he can use money in his life, by going to different trusted other dinosaur friends in his community, who each give him a different piece of advice. It's meant to expose children to the different ways they can spend or use money, so that all children are able to access financial education more equally as they go into key stage two."

According to the Money and Pensions Service, 5.3 million children don't get a meaningful financial education at school. 

Laura Halloran says Milo's Money has been designed to fit around the curriculum:

"It fits directly into what schools are already needing to do and the many targets that they're already trying to hit. And we do feel that we can try to get more financial education embedded in schools by showing teachers how they can teach financial education and still hit those targets that have already been set for them in other curriculum areas."

The resources have already been piloted in 90 primary schools throughout the UK and Laura Halloran says financial habits are set in children before they reach the age of seven: 

"It's vital to teach them that money is a tool and can be used to build their lives in the way they want. And that should include things like giving and sharing, and creating, not just spending or  saving without any intention behind it. So it's a wonderful opportunity to bring those values forward."

The Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, says:

"Financial education should not only teach children how to spend and save, but how to approach the use of money with wisdom, generosity, justice and thankfulness. Milo's Money is a wonderful resource because it does just that. I hope that as many children as possible have the chance to read and learn from it."

Molly Wilkins, from Heathfield Church of England Primary School in Nottingham said: 

"Children rarely understand the concept of money, how people acquire it…or what things cost. Especially over this past difficult year, when many people have lost their jobs or had a reduced income, it is becoming more important that children understand the concept of money."

For more information about Milo's Money go to https://milosmoney.co.uk/

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